Tiong Bahru Market
Find a variety of local favorites up on the second floor in this food center, the first modern market to be built in a housing estate in Singapore. It’s a focal point for the neighborhood, and the chwee kueh (a type of rice cake with preserved radish), wonton noodles and char kway teow (charred-fried noodles) are not to be missed.
30 Seng Poh Rd., 2nd floor, Singapore 168898
Seng Poh Tea Garden
Use this as a starting point — or perhaps a rest stop — as you take an architectural tour around Tiong Bahru’s prewar flats. This small oasis, marked by a statue of a dancing woman, is close to the distinctive horseshoe-shaped flats at Moh Guan Terrace, where one of the city’s first air-raid shelters is also located.
Seng Poh Tea Garden, Seng Poh Road, Singapore 161077
No mere bookshop, BooksActually has done more for the local literary scene than any government-funded initiative has. Its artfully curated shelves are where many local writers got their start, through BooksActually’s publishing imprint, Math Paper Press. Singapore and regional writers are very much the focus here; they’ll offer insight into issues our society continues to grapple with today. Be sure to check out the little knickknacks on sale, too. They make perfect souvenirs.
9 Yong Siak St., Singapore 168645
Woods in the Books
This whimsical little shop specializes in picture books for the young and those older ones who still appreciate some good childhood wisdom. You’ll find classics like “The Little Prince,” “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” and Dr. Seuss books, plus some titles by local authors and illustrators.
No. 3 Yong Siak St., Singapore 168642
Plain Vanilla Bakery
There are a few locations of this local bakery across the city, but the one in Tiong Bahru is simply gorgeous, decorated with flowers and lush potted plants. Indulge in the cupcakes; they taste even better than they look.
1D Yong Siak St., Singapore 168641
A newer addition to the Tiong Bahru eateries, Merci Marcel is a cozy little bistro that turns into a wine bar at night, perfect for long conversations over good coffee. If it’s not too crowded, have a seat at the intimate courtyard at the back.
56 Eng Hoon St., #01-68, Singapore 160056
Bincho at Hua Bee
A noodle stall by day, this space turns into a Japanese izakaya by night, a testament to the blend of old and new that defines this neighborhood. The focus here is on yakitori (grilled skewers) and beers and sake imported from Japan.
78 Moh Guan Terr., #01-19, Singapore 162078
Pick up some indie music along with classic jazz and rock at this record shop, which opened in 2014. Speak to the owner for recommendations; he’s friendly and always keen to chat about music.
55 Tiong Bahru Rd., Singapore 160055